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Primary Prevention

To prevent sexual violence before it takes place and eliminate sexual violence altogether, we need to involve the whole community.

Primary prevention aims to create an environment which increases the protective factors which foster equitable, loving, respectful relationships and reduces the risk factors that support and enable sexual violence.

There are lots of ways of thinking about primary prevention. It has been described as “moving upstream” by some practitioners or as working in the “green fields” before the fence at the top of the cliff. Both metaphors draw attention to primary prevention stopping harm before it occurs.

The Tauiwi Prevention Project use the metaphor of the vegetable garden, to focus attention on promoting the behaviours and attitudes in our communities which enhance well-being for all.


How can I protect my child from sexual abuse?

If you are looking for information about child sexual abuse, and what to look out for to keep our children safe, check out this pamphlet.  Parents and others caring for children are often unsure about what particular behaviour means.  This pamphlet is a good place to start.  There are ideas about how to make sure children know they can talk to someone if someone touches them in a way they don’t like, or asks them to keep a secret which makes them feel bad.   Learn more about keeping children safer from child sexual abuse.


IMPORTANT Inquiry on funding of sexual violence services

The Social Services Select Committee is holding an inquiry into funding of specialist sexual violence social services. It has called for public submissions. We are urging agencies, everyone affected by sexual violence, families/whanau and the public to make submissions by the closing date of 10 October. This is a real opportunity to make a difference. We strongly encourage you to have your say.... > read more...


Primary Prevention Programmes for Tauiwi and Bicultural Communities

“The Tauiwi Prevention Project” has a database of primary prevention programmes based on responses to our stocktake survey, published in Preventing Sexual Violence: A Stocktake of Tauiwi & Bicultural Primary Prevention Activities 2013. The following programmes are available to prevent sexual violence around the country.


Shakti Legal Advocacy & Family Social Services Inc.

National Collective of Rape Crisis and Related Groups Aotearoa

Women's Self Defence Network Wahine Toa

Family and Community Services

Rainbow Youth

Rape Prevention Education, Whakatu Mauri

CAPS Hauraki Inc

New Zealand Police

Auckland Sexual Abuse HELP Foundation

Empowerment Trust

Family Planning

Rape Crisis Dunedin

Te Puna Oranga

Support of Sexually Abused (SOS) Kaipara

  • Ph: 09 439 6070
  • Email:
  • All programmes available in the Kaipara District - Northland
  • Dealing with Disclosures
  • Sexual Abuse and Violence Education (SAVE)
  • What is Sexual Abuse?
  • Safety Skills
  • Sexual Harassment

Sexual Abuse Prevention Network

Wairarapa Rape & Sexual Abuse collective Inc

Abuse & Rape Crisis Support (ARCS) Manawatu


Our Reports

Prevention Stocktake and Factsheets

In 2012 the Tauiwi Prevention Project completed a national stocktake of primary prevention activities, excluding kaupapa and tikanga Māori activities. The resulting report summarises data gained from the stocktake survey. Most activities and programmes to prevent sexual violence in New Zealand are provided by the community sector, in particular the specialist sexual violence intervention and prevention sector.

The stocktake illustrates that the specialist sexual violence sector has developed a range of primary prevention activities and programmes from within a very limited resource base. There is significant interest in further developing shared understandings of primary prevention from a national perspective, including resources which can be rolled out around the country.

Read the full report, factsheets below, or the Executive Summary:

Factsheet 1: Tauiwi Prevention Strategies

Factsheet 2: Tauiwi Prevention Programmes

Factsheet 3: Tauiwi Prevention Partnerships and Networks  

Factsheet 4: Tauiwi Prevention Information, Resources and Support Needs


The general public primarily learn about social and community issues through the media. News reporting is crucial to how sexual violence is understood in our communities.

In our media audit of 2012 news reporting in New Zealand, sexual violence stories seldom included expert commentary. Instead, commonly held but untrue beliefs featured prominently. Reporting was largely restricted to events surrounding the investigation and trial of those accused of sexual violence. There was confusion between “sex” and “sexual violence” and what consent means.

Read the results of our media audit here:

Reporting Sexual Violence (Acrobat pdf) (Word doc)

Media Sexual Violence Factsheet (Acrobat pdf) (Word doc)

New Zealand Based Primary Prevention Resources

Building Social Norms of Respect

START is a specialist NGO social service that has significant experience in the field of prevention of child sexual abuse.

NetSafe is an independent non-profit organisation that promotes confident, safe, and responsible use of online technologies.

Ending Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and Child Trafficking for Sexual Purposes, ECPAT Child ALERT offers information to address and prevent the sexual exploitation of children.

Sex n Respect
Working with young people to promote respectful relating.

The Word
A youth-focussed website designed for – and by – New Zealand teenagers, with information and resources about sexuality and relationships.

GR8mates is a website for teenagers supporting friends who have had an unwanted sexual experience.

Who Are You?
Short film with ideas about how bystanders can intervene safely to prevent sexual violence.

Think Differently
Think Differently is a social change campaign to encourage and support a fundamental shift in attitudes and behaviour towards disabled people. It’s about focusing on what people can do rather than what they can’t.

It’s not OK
The It's not OK campaign is a community-driven effort to reduce family violence in New Zealand. Its goal is to change attitudes and behaviour that tolerate any kind of family violence.

Kidpower Fullpower Teenpower Trust
We help people stay safe, act wisely and believe in themselves. Our goal is to build a safer world with positive strategies to stop violence

Disability Clothesline Project
The disability clothesline project is a way of breaking the silence about violence and abuse, enabling victims to give creative expression to their experiences as they use clothing as a canvas.

A website for young people to share feelings and experiences about sexuality and gender identity to enhance connectedness and to promote diversity in their communities.

CAPS Hauraki
CAPS Hauraki has practical, hopeful and specialised resources adults can use to raise healthy kids and prevent child abuse.

Hollaback! Wellington
Hollaback! Wellington is part of an international movement to end street harassment. Hollaback is a network of blogs and several mobile applications.

Shakti Youth Services
Step by step, we will work towards empowering all migrant and refugee youth in Aotearoa/New Zealand to live lives with dignity, free from violence and fear, and to help create safer homes and communities together.

Pacific Islands Safety and Prevention Project
The PROJECT is a community development social service, integrating cultural practises to enhance the well-being of communities.

Women's Self Defence Network Wāhine Toa
The Women’s Self Defence Network — Wāhine Toa believes that all women and girls have a fundamental right to live in safety from violence and abuse.

Rainbow Youth
Rainbow Youth is an Auckland-based organisation providing support, information, advocacy and education for queer and trans* young people (aged between 13 and 28), their friends and Whānau, and those who work with queer and trans* youth.

Rape Prevention Education, Whakatu Mauri
Rape Prevention Education (RPE) works in the greater Auckland area and nationally to prevent sexual violence through the delivery of education and health promotion/prevention activities.

Sexual Abuse Prevention Network
The Sexual Abuse Prevention Network (formally known as Wellington Sexual Abuse Network - WSAN) is a collaboration of sexual abuse survivor agencies and an offender agency in the Wellington region.

RAASC (Rape and Abuse Support Centre Southland Inc)
We offer Abuse Prevention and Awareness Education Programs to empower individuals, community groups, other agencies, schools and churches.

National Collective of Rape Crisis and Related Groups Aotearoa
Prevention work from member agencies all over the country.

Find out more about primary prevention theory and research:

Washington Coalition of Sexual Assault Programs - provides technical assistance, trainings, and resources on the primary prevention of sexual violence

Australian Centre for the Study of Sexual Assault - knowledge and information centre for reducing sexual violence

Prevention Institute brings cutting-edge research, practice, and analysis to today's pressing health and safety concerns. Broader than sexual violence prevention.

The National Sexual Violence Resource Center provides leadership in preventing and responding to sexual violence through collaboration, sharing and creating resources, and promoting research.

Prevent Connect is a national project of the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault. The goal of PreventConnect is to advance the primary prevention of sexual assault and relationship violence by building a community of practice among people who are engaged in such efforts.

The Northwest Network of Bisexual, Trans, Lesbian and Gay Survivors of Abuse works to end violence and abuse by building loving and equitable relationships in our community and across the United States.

The New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse provides accessible, comprehensive and up-to-date information on family and whānau violence, including some content on sexual violence primary prevention.

VAWnet, The National Online Resource Center on Violence Against Women is a comprehensive and easily accessible online collection of full-text, searchable materials and resources on domestic violence, sexual violence and related issues.